Tommy x Zendaya “One Night Only At The Apollo” Celebrates The Beauty of Diversity
One Night Only … a moment in time and a sense that we are seeing and experiencing something truly unique in a truly special place. This was the vibe at the Tommy x Zendaya Fall 2019 show during this past New York Fashion Week. The show was set in the middle of Harlem, at the iconic Apollo Theater, hallowed ground for the African American community. Models of all shapes, sizes, and colors strutted down the street-turned runway to a live band blasting classics like Aretha Franklin’s “Respect” and Curtis Mayfield’s “Move On Up”.
Tommy x Zendaya Spring 2019 Trends
Tommy x Zendaya debut Spring 2019 collection focused on classic disco sentiments. However, the trends represented for Fall 2019 show; an elegant funk, with a lot of menswear influenced by figures like Shaft and Marvin Gaye. The “See Now, Buy Now” collection of ’70s-inspired snakeskin-print power suits, leather bell bottoms, scarf blouses, and page boy caps floated down the runway. The One Night Only experience at the Apollo felt like a Brooklyn block party straight out of 1975. Hilfiger said showing at the Apollo Theater was especially meaningful to him. As a music lover and as someone who has spent more than three decades building relationships with artists of color.
Hilfiger and Zendaya Set The Correct Example
Tommy’s track record is commendable. First, he supported rappers in the ’90s. Second, he consistently and prominently features models of color in his print ads. Therefore, Hilfiger is able to avoid the successfully avoided the cultural appropriation traps many of his fellow designers fall into.
“It’s exciting to be showing here [at the Apollo] because it’s one of the [most] important theatres in the world and I’m proud to stand behind what it represents. I feel that we’ve always been a brand that celebrates diversity and inclusion and that was heightened in the 90s, thanks to hip-hop artists. I’m proud to have been one of the first ones to have worked with them, because back then people didn’t quite get it.” – Tommy Hilfiger
Hope for Change In The Fashion Industry
Fashion is an industry that thrives on exclusivity and championing diversity is not something that comes easily to those within the industry. Tommy x Zendaya continues to challenge the industry’s status quo by making sure that everyone is represented. Not many designers and houses can boast diversity in the front row and the show’s models.
“A lot of the women modelling tonight have not had as much opportunity as they should have had, and we’re happy to give them the opportunity. It’s a very diverse cast and I love the heart of that type of empowerment.” – Tommy Hilfiger
Tommy partnering with a multihyphenate, Gen Z powerhouse like Zendaya, also represents a new direction within the industry. For instance, brands are acknowledging the new guards of fashion and entertainment, all of whom insist on diversity and inclusion.
For a designer to focus on a young, woman of color like Zendaya and put a show on at the Apollo is not only truly significant. But, it is a step forward in attempting to bridge the more privileged spaces of fashion that the Tommy Hilfiger brand represents with a community that’s historically marginalized from it.
This is a bridge, let’s just hope that the fashion industry continues to move in a positive direction. A direction that celebrates all people and is not just … for one night only.
Watch the entire show
Shop the entire Tommy x Zendaya Fall 2019 collection here. And our favorite pieces below:
Looking for more Fashion Week coverage? Read NYFW S/S 2020 Trends To Know
Photo/Video Credit: Vogue.com